Nature Camp Inc. News

Living Naturally: Adult Session in August, 2009 – Report

By November 30, 2009 No Comments

By general agreement, the Adult Session this August was one of the best in all ways – lots
of new and well-taught activities, excellent weather, and terrific food provided by the dynamic
team of Chris Chamberlin and Stuart Ralston (who came all the way from Minnesota) with able
back-up from counselors Kim Lanzarotta and Megan McDonald.
The theme was “Living Naturally”, kicked off by Flip Coulling with a tour of camp grounds
to explain camp’s efforts to conserve water and energy, and recycle and compost waste. Most
of our favorite instructors were back, with classes like “Living with Fish” (Gerald Pottern),
“What Other Planets Tell Us About Climate” (Terry Richardson) and “Foraging for Plant Materials”
(Julie Moore). We had lots of new topics and new instructors, too: Leonarda Brunst taught
us how to identify fungi, Joanne Hutton shared tips on natural gardening, and Fred Hollen, a
local beekeeper, brought a demonstration hive while Doug Woodworth contributed boxes of
comb honey from his own hives. Walter Mehring and his class produced biochar and spread it
on a test patch of the play field to see if it will improve plant growth. Betsy and David Bangley
gave us a fascinating slide show of the solar home they are building in western Pennsylvania,
while Megan and Kim offered a slide show of their visit to mine lands, describing the damage
to the environment and to human lives from mountaintop removal. Monday morning we had a
field trip to a nearby area that was burned in spring 2008; forester Tom Dierauf and other instructors
explained the ecologic effects of the fire and the succession of plants that will return.
We’re looking forward to next year’s session already. The dates are tentatively set for June
11:15 and the theme will be “Shapes and Patterns in Nature”. Brochures will be mailed in February
to all who express interest, and a version of the brochure will also be posted on the
camp web site.  Connie Sancetta, Adult Session Coordinator